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Posts posted by SpaceChampion

  1. It was released in China, apparently well reviewed, and actress Zhang Ziyi bought an option for producing a film version. I vaguely remember seeing a video of Kay in China reading from Under Heaven too. (The video of recorded by his son, a budding filmmaker himself.)
  2. I wonder if HarperVoyager UK have dropped Kay. There have been no news about UK edition of River of Stars, and the book is missing from the publisher's database.

    Amazon UK has the publisher as ROC, so I guess Penguin is publishing it in all the english-speaking countries itself.

  3. Nice chapter. I can't believe I missed this thread two years ago.

    Well, it really would make sense if Starks always behead traitorous members of the NW. There has to be a reason why Ned traveled to that Keep to execute Gared. Sure, he was the in charge of this business, but he certainly was unable to execute every death sentence in the whole North or his lands personally.

    Ned didn't travel to any distant Keep. IIRC it was right outside Winterfell, at a place traditional for that sort of thing.

    I kind of prefer the hanging version, but whatever. You guys are over-analyzing.

    I was kind of hoping somewhere somewhen we'd get a Dolorous Edd short story where the wightified Slynt on the end of the rope wakes up with blue eyes and struggles to climb up it to attack. Edd, taking a turn at the top of the Wall that night, would amuse himself throwing lamp oil down on Slynt and trying to light it.

  4. My first choice would be GRRM as a wight or an Other. Second choice would be to be at table feasting and drinking with Tyrion, his favorite character.

    For later in the season it would be cool to see GRRM as someone revived from death by Thoros. Then zombie GRRM would get up off the table where his corpse was laid, and pick up a book and finish writing his book "DANCE OF THE DRAGONS: A History of the Targaryens of Westeros". See, GRRM will finish the series even if he has to come back from the dead!

  5. I'd say it was reasonably good, but not as good as Kay's other books, and different in that it is a fairly traditional High Fantasy with mages, elves (called the Lios Alfar, but they're fairly close to traditional elves), dwarves (who are actually called dwarves), dragons, an evil god in a dark fortress, bits of Arthur legend (including Arthur, Lancelot and Guinevere as major characters) etc. Some bits of it are very good (the three nights on the Summer Tree, for example) but some bits I was unconvinced by. My biggest problems with it were mostly related to the five main characters who come from modern-day (well, the 1980s) Canada and are essentially kidnapped by a mage to join the fight against the evil god in Fionavar. I'm not particularly keen on that plot device in general, and there quite a few times when I found the reactions of the modern-day Canadians to the medieval fantasy realm to be unconvincing, they were just too accepting of some of the wild things they saw and the radically different society they encountered.

    The five are from 1970's Canada actually, not 1980's, as far as I could tell. They were not kidnapped by Loren, they were invited as guests to celebrate the king's jubilee -- odd thing to do, I agree, but nothing to do with the war which Loren had no idea was coming. In the second book they made their own choice to return to Fionavar and participate in the war.

    I'm not sure how you expected to them to react to what they saw. Mental breakdowns? Screaming and running away? Become Unbelievers like Thomas Convenant? Perhaps Loren picked them (Matt Soren actually pointed them out) for being the mentally-strong sort who could handle things. Kim and Jennifer did have their mental breakdown moments, then moved past it and did what they had to do. Paul and Kim both acquired knowledge of Fionavar that prepared them. Kevin didn't especially deal well, but he focused on helping his friend deal with stuff that had nothing to do with Fionavar. Dave pushed the eject button and ended up in the one place where he was needed. They were largely observers for that first book, until they chose to be more. They were invited to do things that seemed rather innocent and harmless. Kim -> old lady wants you to visit her cottage. Paul, Kevin -> come hang out with the prince's crew and ride down south with us on this awesome prank. Jennifer -> come shopping with the light elf and hear him sing. Dave -> keep watch on a good kid and come hunting with my tribe. Innocent, harmless.

    I'd also say the society they encountered was not radically different. They were liberal arts students of history, art, law, mythology, etc. They must have recognized the cultural parallels with medieval periods of their own world. Seems to me they were believably able to adapt to it.

    Reading various GGK interviews, I can say he wrote Fionvar for a few specific reasons: 1) he wanted to overturn or subvert traditional Tolkienesque high fantasy by mixing in the mythologies of many other cultures (Greek/Roman, Celtic/British, Native American, Norse, Arabian, etc.) and treating some of them in nontraditional ways (his Arthur/Guinevere/Lancelot was a unique inversion of the traditional Arthur story - doomed to repeat the love triangle as punishment for the crime of his youth); 2) to get Tolkien "out of his system" after spending a long period immersed in Middle-Earth helping edit the Simarillion; 3) and to get his feet wet writing something which he did not have to do a lot of prior research since he was familiar with those mythologies already.

    I love his later works, but in some ways they are less ambitious, except perhaps Tigana.

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